Click here to look for "chess" with the Google search engine.   Hello friend!     ...............    Welcome to one of the best {private} chess sites around. (Recognized as such by several national chess federations and also "C.J.A." Site of The Year for 2004.)     ................     Check out my School of Tactics!!  ..........  Many improvements and NEW PAGES!!!!   (Be sure to check the T.L.A. in 'Chess Life' for the tournaments in your area.)  Thanks, and have a great day!!!

   A FIDE "Top 100" site.  
  Best site, CJA, for 2004.

All the 
in chess.

(Navigation bar 
directly below.)

UP (One level)
My Book Reviews,  # 4


Keep watching these pages as they grow and change!!

 © A.J. Goldsby, 2015. 
  (All rights reserved.) 


    Click  HERE 
     to see my       
    Chess Items.  


Official PayPal Seal


Buy a book  
(And help me out as well!)


 Click  HERE ...
 to see a list of the businesses that help to sponsor all of my chess efforts.

My Book Reviews,  # 3

March 05, 2004:
New book reviews to go here. 

(I am working on about 20 right now. I won't post all of my book reviews here, just a few of my better ones. For ALL of my  reviews,  please visit  

  Below is the whole of my (short) review, exactly as it first appeared on,  November 27th, 2004.  


  A little better?  

 mybk_r3-01.jpg, 15 KB


<< This is my review of Garry's new book, please see my reviews of the earlier volumes. 
(This is my short review, I may post a longer one on my web site.)  

Garry Kasparov is one of the greatest players who ever lived, and earlier efforts have also demonstrated that he can be a good author - if he applies himself. This volume has also received much attention in the press, some chess websites have treated these volumes as if they were the greatest thing to ever happen to the chess world.  

This volume is part three of a series of books. It focuses primarily on two {former} World Champions, Tigran Petrosian and Boris Spassky. (The introduction informs us that the authors will also be looking at the contemporaries of these two players: Gligoric, Polugayevsky, Portisch and Stein.)  

In a way, this book is important - I have a fairly large chess library, so I naturally have many books on both of these players. However, current books on Petrosian are hard to find, many are out of print and impossible to obtain.  

Petrosian is well known for his defensive capabilities, but some of the other qualities of his play are not understood. In the late 1950's and early 1960's, Petrosian might have been the best blitz player in the world. He had excellent tactics, an incredible grasp of the opening, and an uncanny knack for finding the weakest part of an opponent's position. And on the days when he felt like exerting himself, he could be one of the games deepest thinkers. (See his victory over Unzicker at Hamburg, Germany; 1960. White marches his King all the way across the board, a triumph of chess strategy, with an incredibly beautiful finish. This volume also fails to examine this contest ... which is a terrible shame.)  

Spassky is one of the greatest players who ever lived, his ability and all-round dynamic approach to the game has never been fully appreciated by most amateurs. This volume is filled with his beautiful victories ... although a few of his greatest games are missing from this particular volume.  

Now down to brass tacks. The authors have fewer games in here that do not concern the principal players of the volume, so the lack of focus has improved. (Although there are still games that seemingly don't belong in here. Garry's inclusion of a loss to Petrosian in 1979 has no real bearing on the life of this great player. Kasparov almost appears to be looking for some moral justification for his defeat ... which is really sad.)  

There are still quite a few historical inaccuracies, and while the authors have improved in this area, the pundits on the Internet clearly proved they have not completely solved this problem, either.  

This volume was supposed to be of a much higher standard in terms of analysis, a U.S. representative of the publisher personally assured me of this, via a USPS letter. However, I see no real change in the overall level of the analysis, I spotted many errors just casually playing through the book - without even putting them on the PC and running them by the computer's wizardry.  

I decided - after much thought and perusal - to only deeply analyze one game in this volume, in this way I could complete my review in a timely manner. {I eventually plan to publish my complete analysis on my web site.}  

The game that I chose was  L. Stein - S. Furman;  from the 37th URS Championships, 1969. (Game # 68, page # 253 - of the English edition.) On first blush, the analysis appears to be very detailed and well done. However upon deeper inspection the authors only updated previous analysis ... and did not do a very good job. I found somewhere between 15-20 errors, and these range from only minor all the way up to jaw-dropping blunders and oversights. Space would not allow a comprehensive review or analysis here, I will confine myself to just a few examples to make a point.  

The computer likes the move 14...Qb6; however the authors quote a game where this was played and Black lost horribly. (Smirin - Gelfand; Sverdlovsk; 1987.) The authors make no comment on the moves of this game, but 17...Kc8??; was a terrible mistake, any analysis engine will confirm that taking with the Bishop was forced.  

Nor is this the only failure by the annotators, I will not dabble with many of the smaller mistakes and oversights, but save those for my web page. 17.dxc6 appears to be a routine re-capture, but White had 17.Qe8+!! winning very rapidly. (The authors make absolutely no comment at all at this point.) Nor is this the only time that I found an improvement, I found at least five major improvements over the game or analysis ... many of these required no real work, only some close scrutiny with an analysis engine.  

The authors do analyze possibilities after White's 30th move ... but come to the wrong conclusion. And there is some confusion over what move Black actually played on his 37th move. One book - and several Internet sources - give the move of "37...K-N5." (...King to the b4-square.) And while the majority of other sources give 37...Kb5; as Kasparov and company do here; this still does not entirely resolve the problem. If Black's 37th move is incorrect, then the authors failed to do basic move verification. And if the 37th move of ...Kb5 is what was actually played in the game - as given by MGP - this still does not explain why the authors failed to comment on Black's 38th move ... which was basically a DOUBLE-QUESTION mark blunder ... which White failed to notice, (or capitalize on).  

I could go on and on ... but I trust by now you get the point. If you are just an average player looking for some interesting games, decently annotated; then you should buy this book. However, if you are looking for high-quality analysis of the truest caliber, then this volume does not get a passing grade. >> 


The complete game analysis is finished. See the link to the "analysis page" below. 


SundayDecember 05th, 2004:  Since posting this review on Amazon, I have gotten a TON of e-mail.  (One fellow actually threatened my life - if I did not stop criticizing Garry Kasparov.)  Some of the e-mail has been negative, some has been very positive. (Thanks to everyone!)  

About fifteen (15) people were nice enough to send me their analysis of various analytical issues that they had discovered. I have already looked at a few of these, there has not been a sufficient amount of time to analyze all of these letters and ideas in a thorough manner. But I shall try.  :) 

  More problems with MGP, Part # 3  (December 11th, 2004.)  

I continue to play over the games of this book, and also analyze them with a computer. I already have a spiral-bound notebook dedicated to the errors that I found in this particular volume.  

I recently studied the following game ... but nowhere to the detail of  Stein - Furman

One interesting game is:  
Boris Spassky - Ludek Pachman;  Moscow, U.S.S.R; 1967.
  (White won, 1-0, in 30 moves. This game is analyzed in the notes to my "Game Of The Month," for Dec, 2004. See the comments and notes after White's ninth move.)  

This game is already analyzed in many books. 
For example,  "The Best Chess Games Of Boris Spassky,"  by  Andrew Soltis, (1973, D. McKay books); takes a look at this contest. {Game # 49, page # 192.)  The respected author gives both White's 29th and 30th moves an exclam. (29.QxB!, and 30.R-K3!) 

In the book,  "Boris SPASSKY's 400 Selected Games,"  by  IM Sergei Soloviov, (2003, Chess Stars); also examines this fascinating struggle. (Game # 170, page # 215.) He also awards White's twenty-ninth move an exclam. (29.QxB/f6!)  


Kasparov, in  MGP, Part III;  (Game # 54, Page # 213-218); also examines this game. And while I found MANY errors in the notes to this game, perhaps the most graphic involves the last two moves of this epic and captivating struggle. 

For the record, Kasparov gives:  "29.Qxf6!, Rxd730.Re3, 1-0."  (Imitating his Russian counterpart?) 

In fact, White's 29th move, while pretty and also effective ... is far from being best. According to several programs - like Deep Fritz - 29.Qg4+!!, is better than the capture on f6 by at  least 10 points!!! (And after a few minutes, the machine begins to do a mate search in some of the different {side} variations.) And while 30.Re3 is both pretty and decisive, the move 30.QxP/e6+! is better ... by OVER the value of a Rook. (A difference of 5-7 points, and perhaps this move even leads to a forced mate!) 

So what happened here, guys?  

  Below is the whole of my (short) review, exactly as it first appeared on,  January 15th, 2005.  


  Garry ... slam-dunks Bobby Fischer   

mb-rv3_mgp_part4.jpg, 18 KB


<< I recently received my copy of the book - and it has been like a new toy at Christmas, I can hardly put it down. The focus of this book is the one and only Bobby Fischer, many consider this player be simply the greatest chess master who ever lived. And there have not been many good books on this player recently - GM Andy Soltis's book, ("B.F. Re-discovered"); being one happy exception. 

This eagerly anticipated book is well crafted, a high-quality volume designed for many years of enjoyment. Every fan of either Garry or Fischer will definitely want to reserve a spot for this work on their favorite book-shelf. (And Garry has corrected earlier mistakes; this effort actually has several indexes and a bibliography.) 

This volume is really two books in one. The first part of this work is devoted to three players: Sammy Reshevsky, Miguel Najdorf, and Bent Larsen. (Three of the greatest non-Soviet players of the last 100 years.) This part of the book looks to be excellent, I am sure that there are many, many, many hours of enjoyment to be had in this section. 

However, I purchased this volume for the look at Fischer - this is the part that holds my attention and fascination. Fast forward to Chapter Two on,  'Robert, the Eleventh.' 

This section begins with a rather startling revelation - I had heard rumors of this before, but never anything resembling actual confirmation. There is a fairly decent biography; it details Bobby's first steps with chess poignantly and accurately. The first game, (# 50); is a rather lukewarm analysis of one of Fischer's most famous games. (Vs. Donald Byrne, New York; 1956. "The Game of The Century.")  {See my web page for a more complete analysis of this game.} 

Another thing you should understand is that I have been studying chess my whole life, I grew up with the book, "My Sixty Memorable Games." I am intimately familiar with most of these games, many I have studied so often that they feel like old friends to me. And they are also semi-sacred to me, without a study of these great contests, I am sure I would have never become a Master myself. This is why I object to this <Modern School> of annotating. (Anytime a miniscule improvement is found, this gives the writer license to decorate time-honored chess moves with undeserved question marks.) As in previous volumes, Kasparov shows a heavy, ham-handedness in his annotations. He virtually suffocates and degrades these games with all kinds of appellations to the various moves. Consider game # 52, page # 222. (Versus Larsen, 1958 - a famous Dragon. This game was beautifully annotated by Fischer himself.) For example, he gives White's 15th move a dubious mark. (?!) I think here it is more of a question of style, Fischer would almost never willingly block in his own Bishops. In fact, one wonders if Garry's own ego would ever allow him to be truly objective. He seems determined to criticize and denounce Bobby Fischer, (and his play) ... as if in an effort to cement his own place in chess history. 

There are other things about this book that I object to as well. After Fischer's famous contest with Panno, (Game # 80, page # 346); Garry just could not resist sticking in one of his own games. Like a little kid who craves recognition for his work - "See? Look what I did?" This is SUPPOSED to be a book about Bobby Fischer! (Lack of focus. Again!) 

I decided to take one game in this book, and subject every move to the microscope of the computer. (Vs. B. Spassky, 1972. # 103, page # 438) I was hoping to find zero errors, but alas this was not the case. I found mistakes that ranged from the very minor, to the more moderate type, and at least one that must go into the, "My Goodness!! What happened there?" category. (I will save the details for the next update of my web page on this very famous game.) Kasparov certainly recognizes this game's importance, just the fact that he spends like seven pages scrutinizing it is significant; as well as the 8-10 exclams that he uses to decorate the various moves in this titanic clash. IF you want a different perspective on this game, see GM Yasser Seirawan's excellent book, "Winning Chess Brilliancies." 

I must also take issue with the statement made after Black's fourteenth move, 14...a6. He quotes a famous game - Timman vs. Geller, Hilversum, NED; 1973. Then he states that this game: "Practically speaking, put the 8.cxd5 variation out of use." This is such a silly, foolish and stupid statement; I feel obligated to take Mr. Kasparov to task on this one. 

I have practically every reference book ever printed in English, and I have 1-2 dozen books on the Queen's Gambit Declined alone. The latest book on this opening calls 8.cxd5, {still} "the time-honored main line." Dozens of players still use this move on a regular basis. [See the game: GM S. Mamedyarov (2657) - GM S. Lputian (2634); / FIDE WCh, KO / Tripoli, LBA; (Round 2.4), 22,06,2004.] If this line isn't being used anymore, why are these two top players ... still fooling around with it? And the real punch-line is that the column in MCO-14 on 8.cxd5, is based on the following encounter: IM Luc Winants - GM Garry Kasparov; Brussels, 1987!!! 

This book is definitely better - especially in terms of the quality of analysis - than many of the previous efforts, but it is far from perfect. The editorial/product description calls this book: "a must for all serious chess players." (I would definitely not go that far!) However, it is fair to say that this is a serious chess book, any player who is serious about improving his game or is interested in the history of chess - would benefit from a close study of the historic chess battles in this volume. But it falls far short of Garry's previous work in books like, "The Test of Time." (Recommended.) >> 

  This is my book review, exactly as it was posted on Amazon / Monday; October 17th, 2005.  

mybk_rev3-kgcg1.jpg, 08 KB

<< The book that I am reviewing is:  “Garry Kasparov’s Greatest Chess Games, Volume One,” by GM Igor Stohl. (2005 – Gambit Publications)  

My records indicate that I purchased this book in late August of this year, so I have had it for close to two months now. I am a LIFE-Master; chess is not only a hobby, but a passion for me as well. I also enjoy good chess books, and this one is a welcome addition to my collection. 

This is a wonderful – if a little pricey – effort by the author of another work … that I happen to like a lot. (“Instructive Modern Chess Masterpieces.”) This is a beautiful hard-back volume, over 300 pages in length. (74 total games.) The book is superbly constructed and well laid out, there is an average of two diagrams per page, and I think there is enough analysis in here to satisfy even the most die-hard fan. 

The author tells you that many of Kasparov’s earliest efforts are not covered, and refers you to earlier chess works. (Like Kasparov’s “The Test of Time.”) This is unfortunate, as the average player will be unfamiliar with many of these great games, and some of the volumes that Stohl refers you to - are no longer in print.  

I checked many of the games with a computer, I never found any serious mistakes in the author’s analysis, and you can rest assured that most of his analysis was carefully checked with a modern computer program. I found the notes to be entertaining, instructive and informative.  

Some of my favorite games (in this particular book) are: 

  1. Kasparov – Tigran Petrosian; Bugojno; 1982. (Game # 18)  

  2. Kasparov – Lajos Portisch; Nikśić, 1983. (Game # 24)  

  3.  Robert Hübner – Kasparov; Brussels , 1986.(Game # 38.)  

These are just three examples, and they range from tactical explosions and pyrotechnics to unbelievable positional squeezes. There are also a few elegant endgames in this book, although the author (understandably) avoided extremely long contests. The openings in here are generally very modern, a serious student of the game would be learning {as well as having a ton of fun} while studying these chess jewels. 

This book only covers Garry’s games through 1993, the rest of Kasparov’s career will presumably be covered in Volume II.  

I must say that Kasparov’s games are truly beautiful, like all the great players, (Morphy, Lasker, Capablanca, Alekhine, Botvinnik, Tal, etc.); Garry’s best games are truly models of great chess. (Outstanding instruction!) And – from a personal viewpoint - other than Paul Morphy, Bobby Fischer and Mikhail Tal; no other players’ games give me so much pleasure as those of Kasparov’s.  

Perhaps my only complaint is that the author occasionally over-uses a question mark to critique moves, often a ‘dubious’ appellation (“?!”) or the “interesting” symbol (“!?”) might suffice. The author also seems to adhere to the requirements of “The Modern School” of chess annotation; this is something I do not necessarily care for. (The curious reader may find several discussions of this topic on many of my web pages.)  

In the end, this is a magnificent work; the author is a solid GM who never loses his objectivity. In the final analysis, I do not think any chess fan would be disappointed with this book; however, it might be far too dense a read if you are just a beginner or a rank novice. 

Naturally, I eagerly look forward to the release of the next volume … I can only hope that the author does not keep me waiting for too long! >> (I gave this book a full five stars.)  

Return  to my  Home Page ... for this web-site. (Or go to my  Annotated Games  page, to maybe see a few of these games that I have mentioned in the various book reviews. You can also use the "back" button on your web browser.)  

    Click  here  to go my first page of book reviews.

   [ Click  HERE  if you would like to go to the page for  game analysis  ...  that is directly associated with 
     any of my various book reviews. ]  

  This page was first posted on the Internet in October, 2004.   This page was last updated on 09/17/14 .  


  Copyright (c) A.J. Goldsby I  

  Copyright (©) A.J. Goldsby, 1975 - 2013.  
  Copyright © A.J. Goldsby, 2014.  All rights reserved.